Whoever thinks that introverts are constantly locked at home and don’t need a single soul to talk to is mistaken. Introverts are human beings who have needs and emotions just like every single one of us. Introverts may be quiet and reserved, but they need friends too. The difference between them and the rest of the world is their definition of well, everything.
They see the world in a completely different way than other people. Their idea of having fun is spending Friday night under the blankets, reading a book, or doing whatever they feel like doing. Their favorite thing to do when they go out is to go for a coffee and spend some quality time with their friends. They don’t like calling people when they have something to share which makes it obvious that they don’t want to be called either.
Which brings us to the next conclusion. Being friends with an introvert requires a lot of patience, understanding, and making compromises. But, it is worth it. For introverts are the most loyal friends to be around.
Here are 7 rules for being friends with an introvert:
1. There is no need to show up at their home unannounced unless of course, something is on fire. You don’t want to do that, trust me. Not only will you scare them and make them think that something is happening, but you will also piss them off when they realize that you’ve simply come to hang out. Introverts need time to prepare mentally for social interaction. Don’t force it on them.
2. Never invite other people to your dates. If you go out to see each other, do it on your own. Do it as you’ve planned. Don’t go inviting other people without their permission. And if you really need to, at least give them a heads up. Give them the chance to decide whether they want to be in the company of a bunch of people or not.
3. Don’t waste your time making small talk. They are here for some quality time. This should go without saying. Don’t invite them for a coffee if you are going to talk about the weather for one hour straight. Tell them how you feel. Let them know what you’ve been doing in your life. Ask them the same questions. Be present. Be honest with them.
4. Encourage them to open up and share their thoughts with you. Understand that it is in their nature to not always talk about things in front of others. Introverts need time to adjust to their surroundings once they are out of their homes. If you see that they are struggling to fit in, encourage them to chime in. Ask them something or simply make conversation with them until they feel it is okay to continue on their own.
5. Don’t be mad and don’t judge when they suddenly go quiet or lose themselves in their own world. This might be a sign that they’ve had enough and they are ready to go back home. Don’t be so hard on them. If they drift off for a moment, find a way to get them back, but don’t do it by saying “HELLO? Come back to Earth!”
6. Give them the opportunity to talk. But let them do it in their own time and at their own pace. Let’s admit it. Extroverts can sometimes be a little bit extra without noticing. They can go on talking for hours without realizing that they’re suffocating the person next to them with useless information. Don’t be that friend. Don’t do that to your introvert friends. Instead of dominating the conversation, give them the chance to say something. Listen to what they want to tell you, no matter how much you disagree with them. Don’t make them feel any more uncomfortable than they already feel.
7. Don’t mistake their need to be alone for rejection. If they agreed to go out for a date today, don’t expect them to go out tomorrow as well. Socializing exhausts them and you as their friend out of all people need to understand that. It has nothing to do with you or anyone else. It is just something they need to do for themselves in order to carry on. Give them time to recharge and reconnect with themselves and you’ll see them again soon.